In light of the impending DOL fiduciary rule requiring more accountability from advisors selling annuity products, a new tool from RetireUp could be very helpful to advisors. Investment News’ Alessandra Malito talked about this retirement planning tool in the article “RetireUp drags and drops annuities into retirement income planning.” RetireUp provides retirement income planning software to advisors. This new tool helps advisors compare annuity products from different insurance companies and illustrates how they would work in different retirement planning scenarios. So far, Allianz Life Insurance Co. and Great American Insurance Group have partnered with RetireUp so that advisors can drag and drop their fixed indexed annuities into different clients’ retirement plans. The tool makes it simple to see how the annuity products work in the plan and whether or not they are beneficial.
RetireUp’s CEO and co-founder said that many of the retirement plans work beautifully when the annuities are added in the tool, but some simply don’t. By using this tool, it’s easy to see how the plans will function once a fixed indexed annuity from one of these companies is added. You can also move money around in this tool and compare using the annuities with the use of other retirement products and planning strategies. RetireUp plans to add many more annuity products to their tool, including those from other insurance companies.
Allianz Life was the top seller of fixed indexed annuities in 2014 and held close to 1/3 of the market share. The Allianz 222 and Allianz Core Income 7 indexed annuities are used in the RetireUp comparison tool. Great American had the fourth highest indexed annuity sales in 2014, which made up a little more than 6% of the market. Their American Legend III with the IncomeSecure Rider is the indexed annuity available in this new tool.
Annuities can be a helpful tool in retirement plans as traditional pensions fall by the wayside. They are the only way to create a guaranteed income stream that you cannot outlive, aside from Social Security which often doesn’t cover all of your living expenses. Advisors Excel’s Brad Johnson said that annuities are like a lever that you can use to increase or decrease the risk inside of your portfolio. He says that annuity products allow advisors to add flexibility to retirement plans and help clients avoid the risk of running out of income during retirement.
Of course annuities don’t work in everyone’s retirement planning, so it’s important to determine if they are right for you before committing to an annuity purchase. Technology tools that help advisors with retirement income planning are always in demand. This demand is increasing even more as regulations change and become stricter. RetireUp’s tool allows advisors to see exactly how an annuity would work in an individual’s retirement plan, something they can share with clients to demonstrate whether or not the annuity is recommended. This tool can help advisors offer products that are more beneficial for their clients’ futures. If the DOL fiduciary rule goes through and requires more accountability for advisors to make decisions in their clients’ best interest, RetireUp’s annuity evaluation tool will become even more useful. It can help advisors rationalize annuity recommendations and help clients see how annuities can work for them.